Born in Santiago, Chile in 1973, Victor Castillo began drawing obsessively as a child. He was inspired by the animations he saw on television, science fiction movies, and the illustrations on his family’s record covers. After a disappointing experience with art school, Victor left his studies and moved to Barcelona, Spain in 2004, where he established himself as a painter in the pop surrealist tradition, mixing comics with classical painting. Victor’s work is also known for its political consciousness and for using humor to challenge views about human nature.
We are excited to welcome the talented Victor Castillo for his 1xRUN debut as he brings us one Modern Love. Read on to see the original sketch and the inspiration behind Victor’s debut in the 1xRUN Thru Interview below…
1xRUN Thru Interview
Modern Love by Victor Castillo
1xRUN: Tell us how the idea and execution of this piece came about?
Victor Castillo: The painting was shown at my solo exhibition titled “The Jungle” at Jonathan Levine Gallery in New York last February.
1xRUN: There definitely seems to be a lot of political commentary on the body of work created for the show at the Jonathan Levine Gallery. What were some of the conspiracies that helped inspire this piece?
Victor Castillo: This is one of the few paintings that came to my mind in a dream, like a flash. Those days I was thinking a lot about conspiracy. This piece is about greed—it is everywhere, and it looks like there is a global conspiracy now. The piece is about how the insane obsession for money has created these lobbyists and groups of people who are conspiring to get more money and even more reach just to make the world a worse place. That is the feeling that I tried to create with this piece; that is the reason I have these two characters in the painting with these arms that are long and confusing, because you never know who the guy behind them is. You know? Who are the guys behind these hands taking the money?
1xRUN: You mentioned that this piece came together relatively quickly, and I know you were painting a few pieces during this time, but how long did this piece take?
Victor Castillo: Yes, I am usually painting a few different pieces at the same time, but when a painting like this comes to me easily in my mind, it comes much faster. I have a clearer idea before I start. Usually I work with many many layers, and usually that’s what takes so long, but I would say from start to finish around 10 days.
1xRUN: Describe the print in one gut reaction word for us.
Victor Castillo: Greed.
1xRUN: What artists inspired you early on?
Victor Castillo: Miró, Dali, Egon Schiele, George Lucas, Tex Avery, Coré, Pink Floyd, Walt Disney, Osamu Tezuka and Goya to name a few.
1xRUN: What artists inspire you now?
Victor Castillo: Coré, Henry Darger, Voina collective, Paul McCarthy, Jean Tinguely, Bob Marley, ROA, Violeta Parra and Guillermo Grez to name a few.
1xRUN: What is your studio space like when you work? Do you listen to music while you work? If so what?
Victor Castillo: The Black Keys, Bob Marley, PJ Harvey, Captain Beefheart, The Sonics, Betty Davis, Howling Wolf, Brian Eno, Combustible Edison, Bach, Charles Mingus, Bjork, Tom Waits, The Beatles, Boards of Canada, Inti-Illimani …
1xRUN: If you could collaborate with any deceased artists who would it be and why?
Victor Castillo: I would have liked to collaborate with Dostoevsky, to illustrate one of his books. That would have been a big challenge.
1xRUN: What else do you have in the works?
Victor Castillo: …
1xRUN: Where else can people find you ?
Victor Castillo: Website